“So, instead of writing a novel you are building a novel writing platform… I see. So will it write your novel for you?”
Too many of my friends have suggested that building Novlr is just a determined feat of procrastination for me to completely deny that they might have a point. However, I feel that in a small way we are procrastinating so others don’t have to. Finding a simple place, that strips back distraction, gives you a nice place to write and makes the inevitable logistical things involved in novel writing easy, is quite hard. It doesn’t yet exist so we thought we’d make it happen.
Only a bad workman blames his tools
No one needs a tool to write a novel. The list of authors who managed just fine with a pen and paper, or a typewriter is clearly endless. You still could use a pen and paper if you wanted to. However, if all else is equal, having a good tool helps. Novlr isn’t going to write your book for you, but we intend it to be the best tool for the job.
I have tried to write a novel. I started on Word. Then I tried Scrivener. Then finally I moved to Google Drive. Each of them frustrated me. Each of them weren’t quite good enough. Of the three, Google Docs is without a doubt the best. It saves every word, it has a clean writing interface, it is available on any device and anywhere, but I found little things hugely frustrating. It wasn’t built with novel writing in mind. Each chapter was a document, but then ordering chapters and being clear which chapter was in first draft and which in second etc got confusing. I ended up using the document titles to store things, but it meant… I’m confusing myself just trying to explain it.
It got to a stage where I just couldn’t understand why there wasn’t a web based tool that made a lot of this easy. I was sure it could not be that difficult – most novels have chapters, characters and words – couldn’t you just make a really simple tool, broken into chapters, that saved so it never lost your words and was a pleasure to write into. I’m coming to understand that simplicity is hard. However, we’re up for the challenge. And, if I’m honest, we can’t help but get excited about all the things that could be possible in the future to make it even better… but as we keep repeating to ourselves (actually out loud – it’s becoming a mantra): FOCUS. We’re focused on getting something simple and good out as soon as we can.
We’ll follow this post up with lots more posts about who we are, how we’ll be building it, and how you can get involved – help us make it work.